Book Review: The Hangman's Daughter



I have mixed feelings about this book. I’m gonna give you a typical Pro vs Con list, so maybe it’ll help you understand how I got to the rating score the way that I did. Let’s start off with the positives. The strength of this book and it’s selling points: 

It’s well-researched. I’ll give it that. The length of this book shows how dedicated the author was in committing to completing this book - it has nearly 500 pages. My favorite part of this book is definitely how it achieved it’s resolution/denouement after the climax. There was a lot of political tact involved to have that crystallized happy ending we see in folklores and fairy tales. I was very impressed with how neatly that was done by the author. I would have been severely disappointed if we got a branded justice sort of ending. I would not be happy given how grounded the novel was at the reality of that time period. It also has a nice warning slash message about dabbling in witchery and the occult. It has very beautiful black, red, and white illustrations. I will say that that is what drew me in, when I first picked this book up.

And now I’m ready to delve into the parts of the book that I didn’t like so much about. The pacing was too slow for me. I’ve had a lot of book slumps trying to finish this book. And this book is massive. The sectioning of the chapters should’ve helped the reader, but I feel like it got in the way instead. It took me about three months to finish this book. And I have another book that I will be reviewing that had the same length, but I didn’t struggle reaching the finish line. The illustrations were beautiful, but on the Kindle, the sizing was just messed up. I couldn’t even zoom in to look at the details. It was quite blurry. I don’t know if that’s an issue that’ specific to me. But I’ve switched from my iPad, to desktop, to my phone, and it will always look the same. Perhaps the biggest miss for this book, is the titular character “The Hangman’s Daughter.” I think it should’ve been titled “The Hangman and his Apprentice” instead. I got tired of the doctor mentioning his love for coffee over and over again. The Hangman was cool as the Batman figure playing the detective role, but for a huge part of the book, the Hangman’s daughter was hardly explored. I understand the constraint of women not having as much mobility at the time, but this is also a work of fiction. I wish they included her more. And while she was the “key” to unraveling the mystery of the book, her absence doesn’t make up for it. 

And those are my thoughts on this book. I finished this book up using Prime Reading. Thank you for reading. Take care. 

Rating: ★ ★  to ★ ★ ★



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